Out of Space is frantic online and local co-op multiplayer game all about living on a spaceship with roommates. It’s created by indie developer Behold Studios and is available on PC/Mac/Linux through Steam. I played this with my partner Mo, and let me tell you, if you find Overcooked too stressful or chaotic, this game will be the death of you. While you’re trying to make each room of your space home cozy, and placing appliances you’ll need to survive, constant hordes of aliens will be clambering out when opening doors! They leave dangerous goo in their wake which you need to quickly clean up if you don’t want to become a goopey cocoon.
When you get into a routine and have an effective plan of action with all players involved, things can go much more smoothly. You’ll have to delicately balance the maintenance of powered rooms, expanding to new ones, and taking care of your needs such as hunger and sleep. This ensures that you always have something to do and need to think and communicate quickly!
The Set Up and Matches
My only complaint with the entire game is the degree of difficulty, and the lack of “levels”. I was recently told that there is an Accessibility Mode for those that want or need the game to be significantly easier, but I’d prefer a bit of an in-between level of difficulty. The latter issue, is because you can only play “matches” and although they are procedurally generated, they are virtually the same. Having different settings in terms of decor, different types of enemies, special challenges, like in Tools Up! (All in! Games), would have made a world of difference.
I’d prefer being able to “beat” the game and having an end goal, but being able to pick up and play any time over and over again does have its perks. This is the type of game you want to play for a couple of hours with some friends, then move on and come back to it another day. Which is great if you’re looking for a long lasting party game! The only thing you can basically change is how long you want to play for by selecting a Small, Medium, or Large spaceship. It reminds me of board-game sizes in Mario Party games.
Unlocking Items and Avatars
The best part of the whole game is that every time you play a match, you get points toward unlocking achievements in-game. Different achievements like eating or sleeping a certain amount of times, will unlock playable characters or new and useful items. Avatars can be selected before every match and are all pretty silly and cute. Examples: sloth, hammer-head shark, fox, chihuahua.
Items, however, will make your playing experiences just that much better but must be purchased with the in-game currency you receive within the matches you’re playing. Some items will act as boosters of others to place anywhere within a room, other electronics need to be on power nodes but will help with sustainability and cleaning. I’m just going to go ahead and let you know that you should definitely work toward unlocking the little “Space Roomba”. It does an excellent job of picking up alien goo.
How to Play and Win
Speaking of in-game items, you’ll always start a match with a pumpkin garden for food, and a recycle to get rid of garbage and aliens, and alien garbage. Meaning, when you sweep up alien goo, it will produce a garbage bag that can be recycled for money. When you knock out the actual alien with your broom, you can trash it for money and 30 seconds of peace and quiet. This is how you’ll be able to purchase the good stuff.
Every room will have a generator that needs you to place a battery in it for light, power, and to stop the current infestation. Unless the aliens start multiplying via egg sacs all over your doors, ‘gooping’ all over the place. Batteries are the first things you’ll need to buy, but if you get a mixer, for some reason, you can ‘smush’ 3 aliens in it to create one.
A lot of the time, rooms will have 1 or 2 surprise boxes in them that you can open and reveal an item you can use right away. Some of them you can’t even use outside of your current match because you haven’t unlocked it yet. Although it is really hard to read up on what those new items do when you don’t have the time! Therefore, I suggest going through what everything does beforehand. A match will end when you have successfully placed a battery in every room.
Tools and Essentials
In order to get rid of all the aliens and their goo, you need a mop and a bucket. You start of with only one of each and a source of water at the front of the ship to fill up your bucket. You can sweep the floor goo but you can only throw water on doors, items, and flying aliens. So be prepared to fight over the bucket or to buy more as soon as you can! If aliens are left alone, they can start eating your batteries and covering your items so that you can’t use them, and that can escalate quickly.
As mentioned above, you need to eat and you need to sleep. If you don’t check your status and you and other players starve, that’s the end of the level. If you get too tired, you fall asleep on the floor and can wake up but it does take a huge chunk of your time. It’s better to either have a chair, couch, or bed to sleep in, all of which will refresh you faster depending on quality. Then, if you spend too much time walking on top of the goo, you’ll need to wash off with water!
It’s important to note that all items are in boxes first. The ones that are brown can be placed anywhere there is room, but the ones that are blue with a lighting bolt need to be powered. The best way to succeed when your budget is tight, is to bring the essentials with you and keep them close before opening another room! You don’t want to have to walk back and forth from the front of the ship to the end.
This isn’t the type of game you’ll be playing hours on end but is a great way to pass the time with friends and family on game night. There are still many items that I have left to uncover so I’m looking forward to going back once I’ve calmed down.
Out of Space$17.49 CDN
- Great game to play with friends, communication required.
- Fun to unlock more items and avatars.
- Creative and silly party game idea.
- Lack of levels and goals.
- Degree of difficulty ranges from one extreme to the other.
- Would prefer more environmental settings or decor.